The Swordlands

And from the Byfrost Bridge...

Conversation between Aengus and his Father

Dian Cecht: So, we’re off to Byfrost then?

Aengus: Aye, though I’d like to arrange some sort of distraction for Siegmund first, see if we can lead him on a merry chase. The Einherjer went to a lot of effort to keep the location hidden, so we shouldn’t knowingly lead him straight to it.

Dian Cecht: Oh I don’t now, I’d quite like to meet this Siegmund, he sounds very… interesting, but for the moment I’m more curous about Byfrost itself, what do you expect to find there?

Aengus: Well, Thunder’s memories recalled a great light at the top, but what that means I’m unsure but I have growing suspicions we’ve been looking at the whole prophecy slightly askew.

Dian Cecht: How exciting! Do share…

Aengus: "He who holds The Crown holds The Bridge, and from The Byfrost Bridge shall the last among men watch the giants fall.” That’s what the prophecy says. Now we always took that to mean that if we could hold the crown, which we naively used to believe was a pretty trinket for the head, but now know to be the crown of the mountain Byfrost, we would find some means to ensure the fall of Surtur and Thrymm. But prophecies are tricksie beasts, what if we’re misreading the word “fall” and it does not mean fall in defeat, but something else altogether…

Surtur, the lord of fire, shall come. Thrymm, the lord of ice, shall follow.

I’m now beginning to believe that from Byfrost we will indeed see the giants fall, but not in defeat. I think fall refers to their arrival itself!

Dian Cecht: Most interesting, do continue…

Aengus: Have you ever seen meteoric iron?

Dian Cecht: Of course, I believe one of my favourite blades is made of exactly such a substance.

Aengus: But have you ever seen the origin of such iron?

Dian Cecht: I’ve seen some of the raw ore at the forge but not a site of origin itself no, its rarer than a noisy gnome as you know, hence the great interest amongst any of the learned who hear of a new source. Tales tell of falling stars though and a great heat as they fall… ah… how interesting, please, continue

Aengus: I saw a falling star soon after I set off following you

Dian Cecht: Errant child…

Aengus: It came with a great light and noise overhead and when it landed it made my firecrackers sound like Karl cracking his knuckles. I could feel the very ground shake beneath me. I made haste to the site of the fall and the devastation took my breath away. I’m ashamed to say that I almost turned back at that point thinking perhaps I had bitten off a little more than I could chew in crossing over into the Swordlands. The woodland before me had been flattened for a hundred yards, mighty trees strewn like kindling across the landscape and a glowing scar rent in the earth. I approached the smoking crater and found a rock of meteoric iron a few yard across but I could not get any closer because of the waves of heat radiating off it.

Dian Cecht: An interesting welcome to the world of the Swordlands!

Aengus: Quite, and I’m begining to believe, very possibly prophetic! We have seen a great many shooting stars recently. The seers always observe signs of portent as major events approach so I thought little of them initially, but now I believe they are portentious in a far more literal sense. I believe from Byfrost we will indeed see Surtur fall. He will light up the sky with the fire of his arrival and his battle cry will echo around the mountains. The comet whose precursors make our evening walks so pleasant will arrive and bring devestation in its wake.

Dian Cecht: How interesting! And Thrymm?

Aengus: Thrymm is harder for me to understand, but if such a comet were to fall one could be sure the surrounding glaciers would soon fall after.

Dian Cecht: And from Byfrost we shall watch the giants fall?

Aengus: Yes, I suspect the crown, or summit of Byforst itself may be so high it will remain safely above the mayhem unfolding beneath. Whoever is there would remain safe. But do you see the implication?

Dian Cecht: You were never overly converned with your safety, or you would never have followed me in the first place, indeed, if safety is all we sought at this point, we need merely step through Karl’s portal back to the Feywild. I have always sensed grander ambitions…

Aengus: Exactly. Hel wanted the bloodlines severed becuase she saw Ragnarok as inevitable, and the severance the sole key to Alfheims survival. We took solace from the prophecy though. “And from Byfrost we shall watch the giants fall” gave us hope, we could see in the propeecy that there was at least the possibility, however slim to defeat the giants, we had the potential to prevent ragnarok altogether. If “fall” now refers to their arrival, not their defeat, then we have no longer insight into how ragnarok can be prevented. Certainly the normal tactics of Thunder and I, to provide a distraction while Karl hamstrings them from behind, will not work. it is my growing belief in fact that we cannot prevent Ragnarok, and all we can do is ensure when we stand upon Byrfost and watch them fall, the last of humantiy is indeed with us. I think it means we have to become the shephards, we have to continue the work began by the Einherjar and ensure the survival of as much of the Swordlands as we can accomplish in the time remaining, by leading the chosen few to safety at Byfrost.

Dian Cecht: Is it not curious then, that such meteoric iron exists here in abundance?

Aengus: It does? Whereso?

Dian Cecht: Have you not seen the red waters of the River Of Knives, and the rust-coloured rock of it’s banks? I believe you recounted to me your visit to the cliff-dwellings of Wayweary, where weapons of such quality are produced and until your recent visit to Thruthgelmir, taken as tithe by Kindrbode. And I personally have always found strange the sheer quantity of jet black rock that adorns the shores of the Kindersee. Perhaps it is just coincedence…

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